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Galileo Galilei

 
 

Galileo Galilei was referred to, in his day, as the father of modern astronomy, physics and science by various academics. One misconception that has lasted many years is that Galileo Galilei invented the telescope, which he did not. Galileo made improvements to the telescope and was one of the first to improve it enough to use it to observe the sky.

Galileo
Galileo Galilei
 

Galileo Galilei, using his improved telescope, on January 7, 1610 discovered four of Jupiter's largest satellites (Lo, Callisto, Europa, and Ganymede). Galileo's observations of the moons of Jupiter revolving around the large planet and Venus orbiting the sun lent support to Copernicus' heliocentric theories.

Galileo also discovered that the Milky Way was made up of millions of stars and that the Moon's surface was rough and cratered rather than smooth as Aristotle had stated. Peering through his telescope, Galileo also observed Neptune but did not recognize it as a planet because it was much dimmer than Jupiter.

One of the most famous stories about Galileo is that he stood atop the Leaning Tower of Pisa and dropped several balls of different masses to show that the time of their descent was independent of their mass. Air resistance was also taken into account in this experiment. This story may or may not have been true, however. What is true is that Galileo did rolls balls of different masses down an incline, which proved the same thing.

Galileo Galilei was a Renaissance Man who also excelled in lute playing and painting. He also attended medical school in Padua. Galileo caused conflict within the church from his writings and was forced to recant his views validating Copernicus' theories and was placed under house arrest.

Galileo Galilei was born on February 15, 1564 in Pisa, Italy and was the first child out of seven. Galileo died January 8, 1642 in Arcetri.

Rumor has it

Rumor has it that Galileo once measured the circumference of his head then extrapolated the measurements to conclude the earth was a gazillion miles in diameter.

In a totally misleading, unsubstantiated and blatantly false claim, there was a document floating around claiming that Galileo preferred wearing the tag on the outside of his underwear in order to prevent chaffing.


Written by Kevin Lepton


 

 

 

 

 

 
     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 


 

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